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Paragraphs Types

September 3, 2018

Paragraphs are the best way to point out different aspects of the entire idea. If an essay was written as a straight text, it would be difficult to read it and perceive the information it contains. Thanks to this writing strategy, a writer can easily send a message while a reader can effortless perceive it.

Based on an intent or purpose of writing, paragraphs are divided into four main types:


1. If a writer wants to narrate, the paragraph is called a narrative paragraph.

2. If a writer’s intention is to describe something, it will be a descriptive paragraph.

3. When a student needs to provide information or explain something, he writes an expository paragraph.

4. With an intent to persuade somebody in something, a persuasive paragraph is used.


Using a proper type helps to write with purpose, structure your ideas, make the logical order of events, and come to an accurate conclusion.

If you search for this topic on the web, you will find more classifications. However, these four types are the crucial division used in school curricula.

Let’s take a closer look at all these types with examples.


1. A descriptive paragraph is aimed to describe a subject or event, to show its main or additional features. This is used to lay emphasis on something extraordinary. With the help of this writing, an author can help the reader to make an imaginative leap. To compose a good description, it’s recommended to use words that are able to awake five senses like touch, smell, taste, and hearing.

Example of a descriptive paragraph taken from Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. It describes one of the major characters including comparison elements.

“Mr. Bingley . was lively and unreserved, danced every dance, was angry that the ball closed so early, and talked of giving one himself at Netherfield. Such amiable qualities must speak for themselves. What a contrast between him and his friend! Mr. Darcy danced only once with Mrs. Hurst and once with Miss Bingley, declined being introduced to any other lady, and spent the rest of the evening in walking about the room, speaking occasionally to one of his own party His character was decided.”


2. A narrative paragraph contains a narration. This writing style is intended to tell a story with a beginning, a middle part, and a conclusion. It can show a sequence of events or actions. Look at the excerpt below taken from Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. It just narrates the events of one evening.

“The evening altogether passed off pleasantly to the whole family. Mrs. Bennet had seen her eldest daughter much admired by the Netherfield party. Mr. Bingley had danced with her twice, and she had been distinguished by his sisters.”


3. The expository paragraph provides comprehensive guidelines or a step-by-step instruction or just explains how to do something. As a rule, manuals consist of such paragraphs. Below is the paragraph which is taken from Smart Watch User manual.

“When you press the power button on your watch, you will enter in the unlock screen for your smartwatch. If you press the middle of the screen you can choose 1 of 3 clocks that have been preset.”


4. A persuasive paragraph is aimed to get people to accept somebody’s idea, or point of view or position. If your assignment is to compose an argumentative essay, you need to build it using persuasive paragraphs with arguments and facts included. Let’s take the example of a persuasive paragraph from the same romantic novel Pride and Prejudice. A woman gives arguments why a man has a right to be proud.

“His pride,” said Miss Lucas, “does not offend me so much as pride often does, because there is an excuse for it. One cannot wonder that so very fine a young man, with family, fortune, everything in his favor, should think highly of himself. If I may so express it, he has a right to be proud.”